Saturday, June 22, 2024

USA Might Give Tough Time To Pakistan: Ramiz Raja Slams Men In Green After Defeat Against Ireland

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Babar Azam-led Pakistan lost the first T20I against Ireland. Photo: AP

KEY HIGHLIGHTS

  • Pakistan lost to Ireland in the first T20I of the series
  • The home team chased down the target of 183
  • Ramiz Raja has slammed Pakistan after the defeat

Pakistan suffered a shocking defeat against Ireland in the first game of the three-match series and failed to defend a big target of 183 in Dublin. Pakistan went into the opening T20I as favourites and were expected to whitewash Ireland ahead of the all-important T20 World Cup. But the Men in Green suffered a five-wicket defeat.

Babar Azam‘s captaincy once again came under scrutiny following Pakistan’s defeat and many cricket experts have questioned him. Ramiz Raja also shared his take on Pakistan’s defeat and opined that even USA team can give a tough time to Pakistan. The 2009 T20 WC Champions are scheduled to face the co-hosts of the 2024 T20 WC on June 6.

“How will Pakistan win the World Cup, you don’t have a combination, the opening pair is not set, the set batters lose their wickets and the middle order doesn’t function well. In the current situation, how will Pakistan go to the semi-finals?” Ramiz Raja said on his YouTube channel.

“I think US might give tough time to Pakistan because they also have some expats from India and Pakistan playing for them.”

Mohammad Rizwan failed to get a start and departed for 1 off 4 balls. Captain Babar scored a half-century but took 43 balls to score 57 runs. Courtesy of Iftikhar Ahmed’s unbeaten 37 off 15 balls, Pakistan breached the 175-run mark and put on a total of 182 on the board.

Ireland lost two wickets in the powerplay. Andrew Balbirnie and Harry Tector took the onus and they added 77 runs for the third wicket. Balbirnie scored 77 off 55 while Tector played a 36-run knock off 27 balls.

Ireland’s lower order made vital contributions and the home team chased down the target with just one ball left. Shadab Khan struggled with the ball and leaked 54 runs in his four overs.

The Men in Green were without the services of Mohammad Amir. The left-arm pacer had visa issues and he couldn’t fly with the team. He will be available for the second T20I.

Pakistan’s T20 World Cup schedule

Pakistan will kick off their T20 World Cup campaign against USA on June 6. They will face arch-rivals, India in their second game on June 9. Pakistan will take on Canada and Ireland in their next two games on June 11 and 16, respectively.

Ireland’s win over Pakistan would have given them a big boost and they would back themselves to defeat the Men in Green in another ICC event. Ireland had famously defeated Pakistan in the 2007 ODI World Cup fixture.

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